Any homeowner will prioritize safety above anything else when it comes to home improvements. When building a deck, one of the first things many will consider is how safe and stable it is. But even after it’s all finished, there are still some issues regarding safety. For instance, many decks are susceptible to being slippery when wet. The question is, how can you stop composite decking from becoming slippery when wet? Here are some of the best tips that you can try.
- Always keep your deck dry. To prevent your deck from becoming slippery, you first need to prevent it from becoming wet in the first place. If you have a water feature in your outdoor areas, such as a fountain, a pond or a pool, make sure to keep an eye out on any water on the deck. Wipe them as often as possible. If you do some cooking and eating at your composite decking, you’ll also want to clean any food and liquid spills. Aside from preventing your deck from being slippery, keeping it dry also protects it from stains, moulds, and mildew.
- Do a thorough clean at least twice a year. Being low-maintenance does not mean you don’t have to clean and maintain your composite deck. When poorly maintained, even moulds and mildew can grow on your deck’s surface. Piles of dirt, pollen, leaves, and other debris can potentially attract moulds and mildew. When they grow on your deck, it makes it more slippery. A quick wash with water and soap once in a while can prevent it. However, many decking experts recommend scrubbing your composite deck to remove deep-seated dirt at least once in every six months. To do this, you will need a soft-bristle brush, a cleaning solution of your choice, and water. You can use a power washer if your warranty permits it. If you do use a power washer, make sure to set it at a low setting using a wide tip.
- Place anti-slip carpets and rugs. Another way to prevent accidents on your composite deck is to place a few anti-slip carpets and rugs. You can find a variety of these products made for composite decking. Some people also use heavy rubber mats similar to what you would use on kitchen floors, especially during winter where your deck will get inevitably wet. Aside from making it less slippery, mats, carpets, and rugs can also protect your composite deck from other elements. However, you will want to clean your decks as often as possible. If you leave them out for too long, they can leave marks and stain your deck. Also, it’s best to avoid any floor covering that has metal accents, as they can scratch your decking.
- Put some non-skid adhesive strips. If you have decking stairs, you will want to get some non-skid adhesives or anti-slip tapes. While they are primarily for stairs, you can find some that you can install directly on your decking boards. These tapes can vary in quality, from very fine to very coarse. They are also available in different colours, and some are even transparent.
- Apply anti-slip coatings. Another option that you can do is to apply anti-slip coating on your composite deck. Unlike the other solutions, this one is more of a permanent fix. However, you will want to make sure that you won’t void your warranty or your guarantee. You also have to make sure that you’ll be using a clear anti-slip coating, as there are many coloured ones. Lastly, your deck will be significantly rougher when you use this method. It won’t hurt, but you will feel a difference, especially when you are barefoot walking on the deck. For this reason, it’s best to reserve this solution as your final option.
- Consider using grooved decking boards. Another permanent fix that you can consider is to upgrade your composite decking boards. If you have plans to replace your deck or build a new one, you will want to consider using textured composite decking boards instead, ones with grains. Or better, you can select ones with grooved surfaces. Textured and grooved composites offer better friction, which reduces slickness on your deck, especially when wet. You can also look for products that have anti-slip capping.